An 18th century saint, Sidi Ahmad al-Tijani, said that the closest of the doors to God is gratitude. Tijani's description of gratitude was offered in the language of a lover. He equated gratitude to exposing oneself completely and fully to one's beloved. The idea is that the bride and groom’s joy of, and surrender to, unity is not found in the wedding celebration; it is in the what happens after. And so it is with the lover of God. The distance between one and the grace and loving mercy that permeates this world is merely the span of thanks.
So please consider these pages a love letter. It sings the song of a faith I have come to cherish. It is a love letter to the prophets and saints and sowers of that faith. Unlike other love letters, though, it is meant to be shared, so that those who are unfamiliar with a Love like this might understand what drives, or even better, compels, a yearning adoration and gratitude for the faith called Surrender (or, in Arabic, Islam).
"There is no goodness in one who is neither friendly, nor befriended. The best of people are those who are most beneficial to people."
--Sayyidina Muhammad (ﷺ).